October 2018

Judge orders arrest of no-show Exmouth sex offender

A judge has issued a warrant for the arrest of a sex offender from Exmouth who failed to turn up for his sentencing hearing at Exeter Crown Court.

Former school IT technician Anthony Fowler, from Withycombe Raleigh, has a record of internet sex offending dating back to 2006 and was at risk of being sent to jail for breaching a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO).

The order was intended to allow police to monitor his online activity and he broke it by failing to tell officers from the Public Protection Unit about three internet-enabled devices that he acquired.

In the past the 45-year-old has used false identities to go into online chat rooms, posing as a fit young man using the name Snowboarder Seth.

He has already been jailed twice before, in 2011 for distributing child abuse images, and in March last year for breaching the SHPO and having images of serious child abuse on his phone.

Fowler, of Ryll Grove, Exmouth, admitted breaching the SHPO again at Exeter Magistrates Court and his case was committed to Exeter Crown Court for sentence.

Judge Peter Johnson issued a warrant, not backed for bail, after he failed to show up.

It is the second time he has jumped bail. He also absconded when he was caught with child abuse images in 2007, when he was already on a sex offenders’ course for a previous offence of possessing images.

On that occasion he went to France for four years, where he worked as a furniture maker until being arrested on a European Arrest Warrant in November 2011.

February 2017

Exmouth paedophile jailed

A paedophile from Exmouth who boasted online that he was going to the beach to look at young girls has been jailed.

Former school technician Anthony Fowler offered to swap images of child abuse with strangers who he met in online forums where he posed as a fit young snowboarder.

In reality he is 44, still lives with his parents, and walks with crutches after injuring his back in an accident while working as a roofer.

He was already a registered sex offender and banned from using chat rooms or viewing any child images when he downloaded pictures showing girls as young as three suffering serious abuse.

He has two previous convictions for accessing or distributing child images going back to 2006 when he was an IT technician at Exmouth Community College and has already served one jail sentence.

Fowler, of Ryll Grove, Exmouth, admitted three counts of making indecent images of children and two of breaking a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO) and was jailed for eight months by Judge Erik Salomonsen at Exeter Crown Court.

The Judge told him: “You committed this offence in breach of a SOPO. The probation report says you have a disregard for the directions of the court and are influenced by a self serving bias.

“It says you display a worrying lack of remorse and that you understood the requirements of the SOPO but took a calculated risk in the hope of not being caught.

“Even though I can observe you are in pain from your back, it is the court’s clear duty to impose an immediate sentence. It will be for the authorities in prison to deal with your health issues.”

Mr Paul Grumbar, prosecuting, said Fowler has previous convictions for downloading images in 2006 and possessing and distributing them in 2011.

He was subject to a SOPO which banned him from accessing any child images on the internet but was found with files on his home built computer and Samsung smartphone when police raided his home in June 2015.

A total of 214 still images were recovered of which 25 were in the worst category A, depicting serious abuse of children by adults. Some of the stills were single frames from movies.

Mr Grumbar said there were chat logs from Skype and Kik on his phone which related to the exchange of child abuse images.

Mr Grumbar said: “He told the writer of the probation report he knew he was not allowed to access these images but did so anyway. He said he looked at the images because of the difficulties caused by his back injury.”

Fowler’s use of an online alias was a further breach of the SOPO.

July 2004

Computer technician accused of child abuse images

A computer technician at Exmouth Community College has been charged with stealing a school laptop and using it to download indecent photographs of children.

Anthony David Fowler, 32, of Ryll Grove, Exmouth, appeared before Exeter magistrates yesterday, charged with 11 offences of making indecent photographs of a child between March and May last year.

At the time of the offences, he was working as a computer network technician at the school.

He is also charged with stealing a £1,000 Mitsubishi projector and stealing a £1,500 Dell laptop computer.